How Indeed built a new brand identity to help all people get jobs
In early 2019, an ambitious initiative codenamed Project Aurora was born inside Indeed to create a dynamic new identity focused on bringing our brand into the future while honoring the foundational features that helped Indeed become the world’s number one job site* over the past 16 years.
From the company’s beginning, we’ve always strived to be a brand that people trust. We expanded our designs piece by piece whenever we saw a way to make it easier for people to find work or hire, but we’ve never endeavored to remake the entire system. Until now.
On February 8th 2021, the biggest update to Indeed’s brand identity in the company’s history — came to fruition.
Designed to integrate the look and feel of our products and solutions, the new identity reflects the pace of our evolution and helps us deliver on our belief that Indeed is here to help everyone get jobs. All people. All skills. All levels.
Building our values into our brand
Dave Nguyen, Senior Creative Director of Brand Systems, led the project with his team working cross-functionally with a variety of collaborators from UX to Product to Marketing. Working alongside our executive leadership team, they integrated the core values of our company into the new look and feel of the brand.
“Everything, from the foundation of our in-product design system to the ways our brand is expressed through color, was done with a data-driven approach. This allowed us the opportunity to create accessible and inclusive designs focused on providing the best experience for both job seekers and employers everywhere,” Dave explains.
“We have to live out our story through our brand behaviors and through our advocacy, to make the undeniable connection between what we believe, who we are, and how the world perceives us,” Jennifer Warren, VP of Corporate Marketing adds. “It’s not enough for us to believe it. We have to be about it.”
Show me the data
For the last 2 years, Dave and the Brand Systems team approached their work the same way Indeed approaches all product design — by focusing on the data.
As we’re a data-driven organization, any creative proposal for the identity would need to be tested and successfully validated through our product first. Even things as abstract as the hue of a particular color or the shape of an icon. Our executive leadership team was heavily invested in this vision and wanted the direction of this new identity to come through an informed approach to our design.
As our CEO Chris Hyams likes to say, “If we can measure it, then we can improve it.”
“Our goal was to not only understand if the concepts would succeed in the product, but also measure what brand equity we had in our previous design that was worth retaining,” Dave recalls.
“We started by submitting our creative concepts through user research and brand equity studies. From there, we conducted extensive quantitative and qualitative testing across our products,” he adds.
In early 2020, we did an A/B test of new brand expressions for color, typography, iconography and illustrations within the product on our highest-traffic sites. We made adjustments along the way, but saw success in those initial testings and made sure that each proposal met our accessibility standards.
By the end of the year, there was high confidence in the delivery of these new expressions. In some cases, they even exceeded expectations.
Focus on Accessibility and Inclusion
Each expression of our new brand identity has been carefully crafted so that everything from our color palette and typography to illustration style is recognizable and distinct. This holistic approach was built with a goal of maintaining our accessibility standards while serving a global audience of users.
LaFawn Davis who leads our Environmental, Social & Governance initiatives including Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging (DI&B) explains, “The new brand guidelines were specifically designed to empower Indeed marketers and our partners to understand accessibility issues in branded content, be mindful of bias related to ableism, and prioritize accessibility in all marketing content.”
“With any job search, there are both highs and lows to that journey,” Dave adds. “So it was important to all of us involved in this project, to build an identity that was empathetic to our users’ journey and make sure this identity embodies attributes in our design that would connect with each individual, supporting them along the way.
Interested in working at Indeed? Visit our new career site to see our updated design and functionality with increased focus on accessibility.
A new look and attitude
We’ve crafted a complete brand and design system where each moment in our product and marketing experiences feels distinctly like us. Along with our refined logo, our new identity includes:
An empathic tone
Unified across product and marketing, our brand narrative is conversational and inclusive. We pair our voice with a flexible tone that helps us meet people where they are in a meaningful way.
Beth Stone, Brand Strategy Director explains. “Our voice and tone is key to demonstrating we get what they’re going through and that we constantly strive to meet and help them throughout the ups and downs.”
Authentic and inclusive imagery
Our new illustration style takes its inspiration from real people representing the hundreds of millions who use Indeed. The diverse set of characters represent the different experiences of the nationalities, ages, ethnicities, abilities, and careers we serve.
“The inclusive imagery in our updated brand rollout is the visualization of our Inclusion and Belonging value in action,” Misty Gaither, Director, Global DI&B Business Partners says. “The images are a confirmation of our commitment to Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging at Indeed and demonstrate the importance of representation.”
In addition to images, we’ve reshaped our iconography to focus on simplicity and helpfulness in order to make our design as easy as possible for people of all abilities to use and understand.
A dynamic color range
Designing a color palette that appeals to all, feels distinctive, and achieves our accessibility goals was no small feat. Through meticulous curation, we crafted a set of hues, tones, and contrast ratios to build a robust system that honors where we’ve come from and where we’d like to go. This range of colors not only provides enough grades for interacting with our product, it also accommodates the variety of ethnicities and skin tones that show up in our illustration style.
History in the making
This initiative is not about following the latest trends in design—it’s about delivering on Indeed’s commitment to build a better world of work through our products and services while understanding our work is never done.
“I’m really proud of the foundation that all of our teams have contributed to as part of this new identity,” Dave concludes. “We’re really just at the beginning of it and will continue to evolve our design and identity to reflect an ever-changing job market.”
*comScore Total Visits 2020